Threave Rovers were founded in October 1953 after ten men met in the former Threave tea room in St Andrew Street. The ten were D. Davidson, D.McVitie, D. Houston, Don Houston, J. Middleton, S. Dunlop, J. Coates, R. Ferguson, D. Tait, and J. McJannet.
At the time there were two local leagues, one for under 18’s and the other for under 27’s, with no outlet for seniors still wanting to play. Fund raising was the initial task of the first committee while the club was competing in various bogus competitions.
The earliest mention of a team in the club’s minutes was for a select to play Rhonehouse in April 1954. Those talking the field were S. Hart, R. McGhie, A. Parks, S. Frew, D. Houston, J. Coates, J. Shaw, T. McCrorie, P, Patterson, R. Murray and R. McGill. The team was insured for £10. J. Davidson was appointed chairman, Gordon Docherty the secretary and D. Houston made team captain. The following year rules and a constitution were drawn up and the club colours black and white chosen. The aim of the club was ‘to play and promote football’ with David Tait then elected chairman.
The club entered various bogus competitions, raised cash by holding dances with such famed bands as the Clyde Valley Stompers, organised trips to Brighouse Bay. Supporters were asked for two shillings if travelling to Dumfries in team buses or one shilling and six pence if only as far as Crocketford.
After the AGM in 1957, Eric Houston was appointed chairman and always held some office. He also became the Southern Counties delegate to the SFA.
The club’s status began to change and by a 6-2 vote in March 1959, they decided to join the Southern Counties League and in March 1960 applied to join the SFA with associate membership.
For the next few years financial fortunes fluctuated with in 1962 a profit shown of £1118 and the following year a deficit of £309. Players had to pay for their own tea at one time but an allowance was restored in 1965. In 1969 the club finances were reported to be ‘in a somewhat desperate state’.
Fetes and a Christmas Fair in 1970 helped raise funds and in 1971 the club got a long lease of Meadow Park from the then town council. This enabled the club to bring the park to SFA standards. In 1977 the club became a SFA full member when David McLean was chairman.
To help sustain financial commitments, in 1977 the club launched weekly club tote forecast tickets. This was valuable in dealing with costs including dressing rooms, pitch, strip, balls, heating, lighting, meals and travelling expenses.
Threave made history by competing in their first Scottish Cup tie on 16th December 1978. They lost 2-0 to East Stirlingshire. Manager was ‘Touchy’ Smith. The following year they qualified again under Jim Welsh when they were defeated at Meadow Park by Keith of the Highland League.
1986 proved to be a year of massively contrasting emotions for the club from the first game of a new year and the excitement on January 4th playing against Jim Leishman’s high flying Dunfermline in the Scottish Cup losing in front of a record home crowd of 1600, to a devastating conclusion on December 20th when local legend, player/coach, Cammy Hitchell tragically collapsed and died playing at Meadow Park against Wigtown & Bladnoch.
Threave subsequently continued to be a successful club winning the championship seven times before moving to the East of Scotland Football League in 1998-99 (whilst also running a reserve team in the South of Scotland League at the same time).
The Club beat Highland League team Wick Academy 3-2 in the Scottish Cup in the 2003-04 season and was featured on TV as having the longest away trip in Scottish Football at the time. It was followed by a 2-0 defeat against Forfar.Threave still performed well in the East of Scotland League, finishing third, before deciding to quit and focus their full efforts on the South of Scotland League due to the financial burdens of travelling to away games in the East league.
In the 2007-08 Scottish Cup Threave provided a shock by defeating Third Division side Stenhousemuir 1-0 in the second round. They went on to play at home tie with Raith Rovers in the third round but were defeated 5 – 0.
Threave won the South of Scotland Football League for two consecutive years during the 2008-09 and 2009-10 seasons, only losing one match in the 2009-10 season.
Threave progressed to the third round of the Scottish Cup in 2010 with a 4-2 win against Edinburgh City at Meadowbank Stadium. The third round draw saw Rovers once again pitted against old foes Stenhousemuir, and despite leading 2–0 at Ochilview Park, they were pegged back to 2–2 at the final whistle. Threave subsequently lost the replay 1–5 at Meadow Park, following 15 weather-related postponements. In 2010–11 season Rovers defeated rivals Dalbeattie Star in front of 350 spectators at Islecroft in the penultimate game of the season to complete a hat-trick of league wins. Threave also lifted the Potts Cup and the Cree Lodge Cup after beating St Cuthbert Wanderers 5–1 in the final.
As an early adopter of the SFA club licensing system, Threave were invited to become inaugural members of the Lowland Football League in 2013. Rovers found it difficult to compete at this level, finishing second bottom in their first season, then bottom in the two subsequent years. At the end of the 2015–16 season, the club declined the opportunity to re-apply for membership of the Lowland League and rejoined the South of Scotland Football League.
After a transitional season of finding their feet again back in the South of Scotland League, 2017–18 proved to be another memorable season, with the club gaining their 13th league title and winning two cups along the way.
After a season highlight beating up and coming Kelty Hearts in a cup game in Fife, Threave lost a play-off return to the Lowland League, a move which the club again felt would have proved difficult due to the high standard of Central belt opposition and finance involved.
Off the park, during 2017 /18 the Club acquired a number of good quality mobile accommodation units and upgraded facilities to form a much larger social club, hospitality suite, kitchen, office, toilet area and viewing platform. In addition, following flooding a few years ago, the pitch has been upgraded and other surrounding facilities including stand roof have been renewed. The Club is now on sound footing due to increased income. Several key personnel including Davie McVitie, chairman, Davy McMath secretary and groundsman, Nelly Cochrane, electrician and Eck Wilson, joiner and indeed others have spent many voluntary hours to bring the Club to its present high standing for many years. Threave continues to be one of four full-member SFA clubs in the south of Scotland.
Threave Rovers became South of Scotland league champions for season 2017 / 2018. During the year, manager Scott Wilby along with club captain Liam Patterson were each rewarded with a testimonial game after 10 years service to the Club.
During the early part of 2018 /2019 Scott departed and Threave are now managed by former player and team captain, Sam Warren, with coaches Michael Houston, Kenny Shanks and Shaun Milligan.